In 2020, you might be assessing if email is still an effective marketing strategy. If you're on the fence about this, these numbers may help you see its value. Email generates $38 for every $1 spent, which is an astounding 3,800% ROI, making it one of the most effective options available.
Developing a successful email marketing strategy doesn't have to be difficult. To get started, it's imperative to ask these foundational questions:
Sound familiar? These are the same questions we asked when creating a foundational social media strategy. It may seem like a basic step that isn't worth the time, but many companies skip ahead and end up with a strategy that doesn't reach the intended audience. Once these questions have been answered, we're going to step it a step further.
Social media is often hailed as king for gaining new prospects. Since this is the case, you might be asking why is it that email marketing is still so widely and frequently suggested then?
In short: it works. People still use email daily to get their information. A study found that email subscribers are 3x more likely to share content on social media than leads who came through another channel. So by leveraging email marketing, you actually have a direct benefit for your business’s social media accounts. Since we’ve already addressed the benefits of having a social media strategy, let’s dive deeper into email marketing and how we can use it to enhance your social channels.
By the end of this blog post, you will know exactly how to leverage email and social media marketing to drive traffic to your website, gaining you more interested, well-informed customers.
A lot goes into creating an effective email marketing campaign. That's why we put together some guidelines that can help you build on regardless of your experience.
Ensuring you have a properly targeted recipient list
The dreaded unsubscribe. It never feels good having a recipient opt-out of your communications, but in reality, it can be more detrimental than just a shot to the confidence—the more unsubscribes you have, the more your credibility will drop which is typically tracked on email servers (i.e. Gmail, Office 365, etc.) Although there are many reasons your email sender reputation can drop, unsubscribes are among the most common. Your email sender reputation is tracked and scored by an Internet Service Provider (ISP.) This is a crucial component of your email deliverability—the better your score is, the more likely your communications will end up in your recipients’ inbox. But, if the score falls below a certain threshold, your email may end up in your recipients’ spam folders or even outright rejected.
To reduce the risk of unsubscribes, be sure you’re sending your emails to the right individuals. You wouldn’t want an email about your new discounted service offerings to go out to the wrong list. This being said, your business must always give your readers the option to unsubscribe. You should always empower individuals to opt-out if your product isn't relevant to them.
If you’re using a Marketing Software such as HubSpot to manage your entire contact database, make sure the contact lists are updated regularly. Also, having a master exclusion list that will always exclude contacts in your database that should not be reached out to is a fool-proof way to ensure you aren’t reaching out to people who already unsubscribed.
Come up with a unique subject lines
The length of the subject line matters. According to a best practices article by Mailchimp, it’s recommended to use no more than 9 words and 60 characters. It’s important to create an attention-grabbing, straight-forward subject line that not only sparks interest, but delivers a clear message so your reader understands exactly what the email will be about.
Add personalization to your email
If you have a Marketing Software at your disposal to manage your contact database, you can take personalization in your emails to a new level. Including specific fields like “First Name,” “Company Name,” or “Industry” (the options are endless) makes the reader feel that they are getting information that's relevant to then, not just the masses. This can also lead to higher open and click rates. This ultimately leads to people consuming the information that you think is important to them, potentially bringing in more clients and thus, more money for your business.
Include a Call To Action.
Business professionals are busy people. With the amount of emails that flood into any given person’s inbox, only the select few will be read through. That being said, you’ll want to include the ultimate goal of the email in the beginning or very close to it.
If the goal of your email is to share with your recipient your new service offerings, you should place a Call to Action button towards the very top of the email so the reader knows exactly what to do next. They won’t have to go searching if they express interest in carrying on the action.
When putting out content such as case studies, white papers, and blog posts, it’s beneficial to consistently share it to both your social media platforms and through email to specific recipients in order to reach a broader audience (just as long as you’re putting your content in front of the right people - refer back to targeted recipient list).
A brand’s voice is very important. When lining up your social media campaigns with your email campaigns, it’s important to make sure the language and delivery are consistent. To do so, test different headlines on your social media posts and different subject lines in your emails. See which performs well and try them out on both campaigns. You may see an increase in interactions on either platform.
Social media and email spaces are always rapidly changing. It’s always beneficial to understand current trends and what your competitors are doing with their campaigns so you can stay relevant. Also, it’s worth applying strategies you might find on a social post to an email send and visa versa.
In your emails, it’s often beneficial to include clickable links/buttons to your company’s social media platforms. Those who are subscribed to your email list might enjoy your content so much that they would happily follow you on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn. This leads to more followers and engagement on your social media pages. Emails can be leveraged to also promote specific posts you might want some of your recipients to interact with.
Posting your newest promotions, product offerings, or general industry advice to social media is a great way to drive individuals to your website. Be sure to give your readers the option to subscribe to your mailing list. The individuals who sign up are extremely relevant and are already interested in your services, so it can improve your bounce rates and click rates. You can also promote your company's email subscription on your social media channels to increase the reach of your email campaigns
In part one of this blog series we went over the four steps it takes to create a foundational social media strategy. In the second blog post, we took it a bit further and broke down what different data can tell you about your business. Now, in part three, we’ve discovered by leveraging email marketing best practices your business’s reach will grow, your social media audience will increase, and your client base will see an upward trend.